Following the Equator - Chapter XXI


Following the Equator - Chapter XXI
The "Weet-Weet"—Keeping down the Population—Victoria—Killing the Aboriginals—Pioneer Days in Queensland—Material for a Drama—The Bush—Pudding with Arsenic—Revenge—A Right Spirit but a Wrong Method—Death of Donga Billy

Mark Twain discovers the weet-weet, a two ounce projectile that can be thrown over two hundred yards. The intelligence required for this, as well as aboriginal tracking ability and the boomerang prompts Twain to question why Australian Aboriginals are held in such low esteem. He goes on to illustrate that savage ways the whites have used to deal with those they deem to be savages.


Text and images from The Oxford Mark Twain and The Gutenberg Project.
Locations and dates for the most part are from Mark Twain Day By Day, a massive work by David Fears
(See notes marked MTDBD).


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Submitted by scott on

I added a second audio track of didgeridoo music to this video. I think of it as a further expression of the intelligence and talent of the aboriginal peoples. This chapter starts with a discussion of the weet-weet and includes it in the list of known aboriginal crafts including the boomerang. Twain doesn't mention the didgeridoo but I think above tracking, throwing the boomerang and weet-weeting, it demonstrates a high degree of abstract reasoning and expression. The music is as complex and expressive as any I know about. I've included tracks from:
Jouke Kooistra and Rob Tol
Australian aborigines -- Australian aboriginal music -- Australia